Launching a business is no small task and no matter how big an idea you think you have, it still takes a lot of work and a ton of cash.
That is why Errington Volunteer Fire Department chief Colin Catton has taken his new invention to the Dragons’ Den.
The CBC TV program where aspiring entrepreneurs pitch their business concepts and products to a panel of Canadian business moguls who have the cash and the know-how make it happen, is the next step for Catton’s Buddyrider.
His invention is a pet seat for taking your small dog along with you when you ride your bike.
The bicycle pet seat has not been on the market that long but Catton said he wants to take his project to the next level.
On Sunday, April 22 he was in Toronto where he faced the Dragons. Prior to the taping he told The News he would be asking for help marketing his invention.
“I am looking for advertising and national TV exposure. Arlene is the one I want … she knows about promotion. I want her celebrity face on my product to make it appealing,” said Catton.
The Dragons are ruthless and rightly so — it’s their own personal money on the line.
He said while most entrepreneurs who face the Dragons are looking for cash and investors, that is not the case for him and he will not be selling any piece of his invention to any of the Dragons.
“Money is easy to come by. I won’t cave,” he insisted.
Catton went to the auditions in Nanaimo back on March 18 because, according to him, “the opportunity was just too good to pass up.”
“I guess they liked what they saw. I got the call that we are through to the next round in Toronto at the end of the month. Not being one to pass up a challenge, we are going for it.”
Anyone who knows Catton will agree that going on national TV is not something the chief is comfortable with and even he admitted he is stepping out of his comfort zone.
“No one is more surprised than I was to go on the show. But the opportunity presented itself for auditions and I thought it was chance of a lifetime. If I didn’t do it would I would regret it.”
Catton, his wife and dogs loaded up the fifth wheel a few weeks ago and headed east with the invention.
Along the way they hit a few towns to promote the Buddyrider.
Catton said since he began promoting his bicycle pet seat he has sold about 40 so far and has received some interest from as far away as the U.K. and Germany.
If the innovator strikes a deal with a Dragon, he will have to keep it secret until the episode airs on TV.